January 26, 2020 – Thomasville was among nine cities from across Georgia that received the inaugural Visionary City Award presented by Georgia Trend magazine and the Georgia Municipal Association (GMA) during the association’s Cities United Summit in Atlanta on Sunday, January 26. 2020. Thomasville was recognized in the medium-sized city category, representing populations from 5,000-24,999. Based in Atlanta, GMA is a voluntary, non-profit organization that provides legislative advocacy, research, training, employee benefit and technical consulting services to its 538 member cities.
Thomasville was recognized for the Creative District Vision Plan and redevelopment of “The Bottom” historic downtown area. The Creative District Vision Plan was put in place in 2014 by Thomasville Main Street leadership, City Planning staff, Thomasville residents and community partners and leaders.
The Creative District Vision Plan was targeted at increasing economic opportunity, revitalizing the historic area, and bringing creative community resources together in this important segment of downtown Thomasville. From this initial plan, three important projects were developed, including The Ritz Amphitheater and Park, the Community Trail trailhead and finally, the West Jackson Streetscape.
Collaborative efforts were a critical aspect of the award criteria, with the winning cities demonstrating cross-sector partnerships amongst local government, nonprofits, and civic engagement.
Click below to view a video that highlights the vision and implementation of the Creative District Plan in Downtown Thomasville.